Kent Shaw What Happens to a Sentimental Animal These Days

I was left alone one night with a large machine. The machine was always moving.

Many parts were moving together.

They were very large but not living.

The machine was mainly an internal machine that was pushing other machines to get going.

With the larger machine staying in one place.

It kept me from going outside.

I was the one who would be required to move it.

Or ask it would it consider taking a little break.


This is one method for being lonely. My wife had left.

My living room had left with her.

The edges of all the pictures we had accumulated were trying to hint at the picture that was missing.

But, generally, all I noticed was the machine.


It wasn’t an engine. Or it wasn’t shaped like anything I am willing to describe.

Everything that I might have wished existed on the machine didn’t.

Levers. Valve stems. A meter with readings that indicated “Level of Involvement.”

I was trying to find something I could hold onto. I wanted to get closer.


Not that it’s difficult to sleep next to a machine. But it is difficult to hold it inside you.

My wife is very tender. She’s even more tender to me when she’s so far away.

I can’t tell her that I caressed the machine one night.

But it meant nothing.

I didn’t know where it was sensitive.


“Machine.” I tried to talk to it with my tender voice.

I tried pulling it inside me to get the attention of the smaller machines! “Machine.”

A large machine would make a little more sense if it looked like a human. Preferably someone I know.

Or maybe a tall building. Or maybe a footprint.


Machines are inert. Even with a loud disgusting rutting-sound inside it.

A violence that I tried painting on the outside.

But the machine could not be expressed.

Machines are made of unusual metals that are more intense versions of whatever temperature is around them.

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I arranged outings for my machine using an online profile. “Machine.”

My wife would be glad I was concerned.

I showed the machine pictures of construction sites. Perhaps that would be interesting.

“Those machines are very busy.”

They had lives to contend with. And large corporate concerns.

I tried to find petite machines. Big-voiced machines. Staged production machines.

Everywhere I looked other machines had already moved in.


One of the machines was programmed to crawl on its hands and knees wherever it went.

That was Cain.

And once I started to notice I saw Cain was everywhere.

An inert machine in one direction all its life multiplied by whatever the corporate world could afford.

Are we to be populated by Cain machines?

Are we to realize a direction of the world that is undeterred?

Are we to realize the idealism of undeterrableness?


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